Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

How streptococcal bacteria can be used to fight colon cancer

Date:
May 20, 2014
Source:
University of Western Ontario
Summary:
Researchers have shown how the bacteria primarily responsible for causing strep throat can be used to fight colon cancer. By engineering a streptococcal bacterial toxin to attach itself to tumor cells, they are forcing the immune system to recognize and attack the cancer. The study found the engineered bacterial toxin could significantly reduce the size of human colon cancer tumors in mice, with a drastic reduction in the instances of metastasis.

Western University researchers Dr. David Hess and Dr. John McCormick and lead author Kelcey Patterson show how the bacteria primarily responsible for causing strep throat can be used to fight colon cancer. By engineering a streptococcal bacterial toxin to attach itself to tumor cells, they are forcing the immune system to recognize and attack the cancer.
Credit: Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry, Western University

Researchers at Western University (London, Canada) have shown how the bacteria primarily responsible for causing strep throat can be used to fight colon cancer. By engineering a streptococcal bacterial toxin to attach itself to tumour cells, they are forcing the immune system to recognize and attack the cancer.

Kelcey Patterson, a PhD Candidate at Western and the lead author on the study, showed that the engineered bacterial toxin could significantly reduce the size of human colon cancer tumours in mice, with a drastic reduction in the instances of metastasis. By using mouse models that are stripped of their immune system, they were able to create a 'humanized mouse' -- one that would not only grow human colon cancer cells, but would also support a human immune system, to test the anti-cancer immunotherapy.

The work was directed by John McCormick, PhD, an Associate Professor in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology and Scientist at the Lawson Health Research Institute. "Our team has been studying these bacterial toxins called 'superantigens' for their role in bacterial infections. But we are now utilizing the power of these toxins to re-direct the immune system to go after cancer cells." McCormick says their research provides important pre-clinical evidence that this may work in humans. "This work represents a 'next-generation immunotoxin' that we hope will eventually lead to a new class of cancer therapeutic."

The research was funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research. Jennifer Dixon Pittaro, Peter Bastedo, David Hess and Mansour Haeryfar all contributed to the paper entitled "Control of established colon cancer xenografts using a novel humanized single chain antibody-streptococcal superantigen fusion protein targeting the 5T4 oncofetal antigen."

McCormick and his colleagues have now received a new grant from the Cancer Research Society to develop different toxin and antibody combinations to fight other types of cancer.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Western Ontario. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Western Ontario. "How streptococcal bacteria can be used to fight colon cancer." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 May 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140520120123.htm>.
University of Western Ontario. (2014, May 20). How streptococcal bacteria can be used to fight colon cancer. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140520120123.htm
University of Western Ontario. "How streptococcal bacteria can be used to fight colon cancer." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140520120123.htm (accessed September 30, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

How 'Yes Means Yes' Defines Sexual Assault

How 'Yes Means Yes' Defines Sexual Assault

Newsy (Sep. 29, 2014) Aimed at reducing sexual assaults on college campuses, California has adopted a new law changing the standard of consent for sexual activity. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists May Have Found An Early Sign Of Pancreatic Cancer

Scientists May Have Found An Early Sign Of Pancreatic Cancer

Newsy (Sep. 29, 2014) Researchers looked at 1,500 blood samples and determined people who developed pancreatic cancer had more branched chain amino acids. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Colo. Doctors See Cluster of Enterovirus Cases

Colo. Doctors See Cluster of Enterovirus Cases

AP (Sep. 29, 2014) Doctors at the Children's Hospital of Colorado say they have treated over 4,000 children with serious respiratory illnesses since August. Nine of the patients have shown distinct neurological symptoms, including limb weakness. (Sept. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dr.'s Unsure of Cause of Fast-Spreading Virus

Dr.'s Unsure of Cause of Fast-Spreading Virus

AP (Sep. 29, 2014) Doctors at the Children's Hospital of Colorado say they have treated over 4,000 children with serious respiratory illnesses since August. Nine of the patients have shown distinct neurological symptoms, including limb weakness. (Sept. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins